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How to Start a Dirt Bike that has been Sitting

How to Start a Dirt Bike that has been Sitting?

Finally, you decided to get back to Dirt Bikes, Right? As I said previously that my life revolves around dirt bikes, whenever I have free time, me and my boys love to do dirt biking.

Yes, you can start a dirt bike that has been sitting for years by checking the seals, change air filter, check suspension, tires, and adjust controls. It is recommended that you follow all these steps.

This dirt bike riding journey started a couple of years back and since then I have bought 6 different dirt bikes for me and my kids.

I had to shift to a neighboring city a few months back due to my business and now when I am back, I decided to check out dirt bikes.

I had stored my dirt bikes in a dedicated enclosed room, so they remain protected from hot and cold temperature changes. However, I was not sure about engine status.

So I again started looking at the internet and wasted like a whole week and it wasn,t worthy any more for me to look there. I called my friend Jim, who is an expert at dirt bikes and asked his advice about anything that I have to check before I get back to the riding track.

How to Start a Dirt Bike that has been Sitting?

Now there are few things that you need to remember at the time of storing dirt bikes, this includes checking for oil and gas tank for any leftovers. Also, you should properly enclose the bike where no moisture is present, etc.

There is a long list for this. But we all forget a couple of things when we are parking. Now let us discuss, how should you proceed with a dirt bike that has been sitting for a while now. 

At the time of starting a parked dirt  bike after a long time, follow this guide:

Access Seals

Now here the important point is that why did you stop riding dirt bikes, was that because of an accident or trauma. If your answer is yes, then it is strongly recommended to check seals for any leakage.

This is a must to do as you don’t want any trouble once you are on the track. Start the dirt bike engine and wait for a couple of minutes until the engine is in the proper running. Check again when the engine is warm and I would personally recommend waiting at least an hour before you make your final decision of taking the bike to the track. 

Change Fluids and Filters

Now, this is an essential part of the whole procedure of accessing a dirt bike that has been sitting for more than 6 months. You will never remember when you last changed the oil and the filter unless you have documented it somewhere.

The air filter has to be clean and only then a dirt bike engine can get the amount of oxygen it requires to function properly. Now even if you find a little amount of fluid in the reservoir, it is advised to change it anyway, it will give you relief of mind at the time of riding. I have written a detailed guide here on How to Clean Dirt Bike Air Filter. Read this for a better understanding.

Check Gas Tank

Now again one of the must-do steps initially. Ideally, there should be no gas left in the tank as when added with a fuel stabilizer, it may turn into varnish or maybe gummy if fuel circulates in the lines. I always recommend my readers to use high-quality fuel and it will always save you.

I have seen riders who used cheap and low quality and in the end, they had to spend more in order to get their dirt bike engine fixed. Now if there is some gas left in the tank and in liquid form, get rid of it and use fresh fuel. 

Remember if you find old gas that remained in the tank and it is gummed up, this is a serious issue. You have to get the gas tank cleaned and also clean carburetor if you have a 2 stroke dirt bike or throttle body and injectors that are present in the 4 stroke dirt bikes. Always check engine oil if your dirt bike does not start.

After going through all the above-mentioned procedure, its time that you should start the dirt bike. However, it is still not ready to go to the track for riding. 

Use Grease

You must know which parts of the dirt bike require regular greasing and when and how to use grease. It should ideally be applied to all bearings, cables, and chain of the dirt bike.

Now, this is a must to check whenever you plan for trail riding.

Maintain your dirt bike at regular intervals and you will never have to worry about its performance.

Check Nuts and Bolts

Again one of the essential steps when you are starting a dirt bike that was sitting for a while. You can use torque Wrench and access all the nuts and bolts. They should be properly fixed and according to the manual. 

Check Tires

If you had parked your dirt bike at a proper stand then tires will be in a good shape even after a couple of months. However, the majority of buyers just place it at any corner of the room and then forget it for months.

This will cause damage to the tires of the dirt bikes in the long run. Check the tires for any damage that may have occurred over the months. Check if they are properly inflated. If everything is fine then go ahead. Read here: Dirt Bike Tire Sizes

check Suspension

Now I have already mentioned at the start of this article to check all the seals for any leakage, this also implies suspension seals. Access for any leakage of oil or fluid. If everything works well its good and you can continue your journey again. 

Check the Controls and Start the Dirt Bike

Check brakes, give throttle and you can check the quality of the dirt bike. This is the most essential part of this article, no one wants a bad brake once the time comes. Don’t forget to add a kill switch on your dirt bike.

If you find a problem at the time of starting the dirt bike check the spark plugs, usually they are not affected in a short duration. If they are fine, check for any dirt that may be deposited on their surface, clean it and you are ready to go.

Ready to go on your Dirt Bike

That’s it, I have mentioned all the necessary steps that you may need at the time of starting a dirt bike that has been sitting for a while. I strongly recommend that you go through each and every step in detail, everything mentioned here is for the purpose of safety of my readers. 


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